Navigation Links
Feats of strength begin a lizard's day
Date:8/28/2008

Male Jamaican anole lizards begin and end the day with displays of reptilian strength -- push-ups, head bobs and extensions of a colorful neck flap, or dewlap -- to defend their territory, according to a new study.

"Anoles are highly visual species, so in that sense it is not surprising that they would use visual displays to mark territory," said Terry J. Ord, a postdoctoral researcher at UC Davis and at Harvard University's Museum of Comparative Zoology. The lizards are the first animals known to mark dawn and dusk through visual displays, rather than the much better known chirping, tweeting, and other sounding off by birds, frogs, geckos and primates.

Ord studied four species of Jamaican forest lizard: Anolis lineatopus, Anolis sagrei, Anolis grahami, and Anolis opalinus. Females establish small territories allowing access to food and other resources, while males stake out larger territories allowing them access to several females. The males spend much of the day sitting on tree trunks and displaying head motions, push-ups, and dewlap extensions, all to warn other males away from their territory.

These displays of strength help avert actual physical confrontations between male lizards, which can be very fierce and destructive, Ord said.

Ord videotaped individual males at different times of day, from before dawn to dusk. In all four species, he found distinct peaks of activity at daybreak and for about two hours afterward, and again just before dark. Anoles leave their daytime perches at night to find safe shelter from nocturnal predators.

Scientists disagree on why birds chorus at dawn and dusk: competing ideas range from territorial defense to manifestations of circadian rhythms (the animal's internal clock). Ord said his work suggests male anoles use their morning displays primarily to mark territory.

"The dawn chorus may be a way of communicating having survived the night," Ord said. "If in the morning a bird doesn't hear its neighbor, or an anole doesn't see its neighbor, it may be an opportunity for the animal to expand its territory."


'/>"/>

Contact: Andy Fell
ahfell@ucdavis.edu
530-752-4533
University of California - Davis
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Armored fish study helps strengthen Darwins natural selection theory
2. ASM and FIND to partner on strengthening infectious disease diagnosis in developing nations
3. European Science Foundation aims to strengthen regenerative medicine
4. In Todays Economy, You Can Strengthen Your Company by Building Your Brand
5. Ibuprofen or acetaminophen in long-term resistance training increases muscle mass/strength
6. Strengthening the tumor-fighting ability of T cells
7. Proteins strength lies in h-bond cooperation
8. Woods Hole Research Center debuts new image mosaic that will strengthen global forest monitoring
9. Runners high may also strengthen hearts
10. Building a stronger roof over your head: 3 little pigs project begins first tests
11. 8-day undersea mission begins experiment to improve coral reef restoration
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Feats of strength begin a lizard's day
(Date:5/3/2016)... VILNIUS, Lithuania , May 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... today released the MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification ... deployment of large-scale multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can ... and accuracy using any combination of fingerprint, face ... of MegaMatcher SDK and MegaMatcher ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... BANGALORE, India , April 28, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... product subsidiary of Infosys (NYSE: INFY ), and ... global partnership that will provide end customers with ... banking and payment services.      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130122/589162 ... area for financial services, but it also plays a fundamental ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... , April 28, 2016 First quarter ... (139.9), up 966% compared with the first quarter of 2015 ... totaled SEK 589.1 M (loss: 18.8) and the operating margin was ... (loss: 0.32) Cash flow from operations was SEK 249.9 ... 2016 revenue guidance is unchanged, SEK 7,000-8,500 M. The ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 , ... ... development, skill-building and compliance training platform on mobile devices, today released a new ... Regulatory Requirements for Medical Devices. The course is essential for owners or operators ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... , ... In a list published by the Boston Business Journal, iLab ... a small percentage of the state's 615,000+ small businesses. The list examined companies based ... from 2012 to 2015. , As this award comes on the heels ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... , ... May 03, 2016 , ... ... at Boston CEO 2016 on May 31st and June 1st at The Four ... for leading executives in the life sciences, offering exclusive access to key decision ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 , ... Flagship ... Dr. Nancy Gillett to its Board of Directors. Dr. Gillett recently retired from ... Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer. A board-certified veterinary pathologist, Dr. Gillett ...
Breaking Biology Technology: